Our resident dating guru and How To Date A Model columnist, Rebecca Pearson, suggests a few ideas on where to (and where not to) take your lady this Valentines Day...

Words By Rebecca Pearson

Before I even commence this piece, I’d like to banish any 'Negative Nellies' from this column straight away. “Cynical commercial enterprise”, “I only want to take a girl out when I want to, not when I’m told to”. Boo to all of the grumblers: Valentines Day is great! I most certainly do agree with the sentiment of both commonly expressed opinions, BUT I believe that you don’t need to spend a huge amount in Athena, nor should you solely take a girl on the 14th February. However it’s a day that we celebrate our adoration for those we love, and express it freely via steak, roses and tight, synthetic red underwear. What’s not to love?

Obviously, there are some pitfalls to avoid this coming V-day, and, ever ready to assist you, I’d like to suggest a few ideas on where to (and where not to) take her this Valentines Day...

 

THE DON’TS


Nandos



Sorry. I fully realise that I’ll be angering a lot of passionate Nandos fans by suggesting it as an awful date location, but this is Valentines Day, so I think it’s time to push the boat out a bit. I do not mean spending more money, instead put a little more thought and novelty into it. High street restaurants have their place – especially ones vending half a chicken for £7.00. But this is the time to research somewhere with a fantastic view, or somewhere a little further out with a romantic, roaring log fire. You know what? I’d be happy with one of those family Italian cafes, which serve only pizza and pasta and make you feel a bit told off for wanting pepper out of the big pepper grinder. It’s all about having a bit of a novel experience, of being in it together. Trust me!

(NB this probably wouldn’t work on high maintenance girls... Instead, take her to Nandos and send me a photo of her face when you do).

 

Cinema



I love the cinema. I love films, and pick n mix (don’t tell my model agency). I like the pint of Sprite (again, don’t tell my agency) and I always get the salty & sweet popcorn (agency, if you’re reading this, it’s all lies. I take in a packet of quinoa pops and a mineral water). But cinema for a Valentines date? There’s no opportunity for conversation, you can’t appreciate her specially planned outfit, and every time you kiss, the jealous sweaty man behind you will lean in and whisper his mustard-ey hotdog breath all over you two by asking you to please stop snogging.

 

Picnic


A beautifully prepared picnic with a deluxe hamper from Fortnum & Masons, champagne and strawberries. All presented on a cashmere rug, in a beatifically-located meadow in the countryside, with a string quartet to accompany your dining extravaganza. Guys, it’s February.

 

The Do’s


A Dance Class



I say this because I was recently taken to a Paso Doble lesson at Pineapple Dance Studios, and it was a marvellous date! Firstly, it’s the element of physical intimacy. There’s no “shall I hold his hand?” or “is it too soon to thrust my pelvis towards her?” You’ve both come along to the class, so there’s no choice but to hold hands and get those hips moving! You’ve also got the fact that you’re learning something, together – whether you’re in a long-term relationship or on a first date, this is a bonding experience. If you don’t really know her at all, it’ll help gauge whether this lady is going to be an open-minded, fun girl or a bit boring. Lastly, you’re going to make mistakes, you’re going to tread on each other’s toes, and you’ll probably get a bit sweaty too, which means you’ll be feeling relaxed, chuckling away. Best of all, you’ll buzzing with endorphins and serotonin, the happy hormones of love, which will surely result in a nice Valentines kiss.

 

Cocktail Making Class




I also did this as a date once (yes...I’ve been on a lot of dates!) and it’s another winner. You can dress up like Tom Cruise in Cocktail and show off your guns whilst going wild with the cocktail shaker.  This shirt’s pretty bang on:



This date also has the benefit of including a bit of social lubrication - i.e. alcohol – although don’t get too merry. Having to pay a cab fare because your date is too drunk to move and has sick down his t-shirt is not sexy (believe me, I was the one paying the cab fare). The best dates are those with a bit of structure to them, where you’re learning something, or doing something. You’ll associate one another with fun and adventure – and it’s a great way to avoid awkward silences!

 

Tailor It To Her Passion


This is the absolute best date, because you’ve thought about her and what she wants, no matter how quirky her tastes. So, if she loves donkeys, plan a date at a donkey sanctuary, complete with a picnic in the car whilst watching donkeys balefully stare into the distance... It might not be a candlelit dinner like you see in the adverts, but those are usually selling ready meals, anyway. Once I was taken in to a tea shop and told to pick any teas I wanted (within reason) I like tea btw. It was so much better than a teddy bear, a box of chocolates and a dinner in Pizza Express, which culminates in a rose petal strewn bed (which your mum has probably hoovered up). To make it really special, you want your Valentines to be original and fun, so go wild with your ideas and forget all those boring clichés... Apart from the box of chocolates. Definitely remember the chocolate.

 

NEED SOME GIFT IDEAS FOR YOUR LADY THIS VALENTINES? CLICK HERE FOR TOPSHOP'S V-DAY EDIT


 

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